An Ontario man is waiting sentencing after defrauding the small Nova Scotia town of Bridgewater in 2019.
In 2019, the accounts payable clerk for the town of Bridgewater received an email from Ayoola Ajibade who was using an alias of someone who worked at Dexter Construction, a company that conducted work with the town in the past.
With some changes to Electronic Fund Transfers (EFT) paperwork, Ajibade changed the companies accounts with the town to a personal account in Brampton, Ontario.
Ajibade had no connection to the construction company that he changed the EFT paperwork of. Ajibade then proceeded to send an invoice for just under $500,000, which the town paid. The guilty party then proceeded to wire transfer $180,000 to a Chinese Bank account.
The bank manager in Brampton, Ontario stopped the wire transfer and began an investigation into the source of the money, due to its large sum.
Bridgewater Mayor David Mitchell said in a facebook post after Ajibade was found guilty of fraud that the town had changed the process used to prevent this from happening again, "It’s important for people to understand that despite the way it was portrayed by some of the media – as an Uber driver who simply asked for $500,000 or, as some have commented, as if this was one of those phone scams we might jokingly think nobody would fall for. This was nowhere near anything like that."
Mitchell went on to say, "This was sophisticated and choreographed with specific details beyond common knowledge. The individual had researched, knew the name of the specific person at Dexter’s that the Town deals with for payments and had additional detail (that I cannot divulge) that made it seem quite clearly, to be legitimate."
His worship said that hes happy that there are proper checkpoints in place to ensure people Ajibade couldn't get away with money laundering, "The checkpoints in our national banking system, especially when it comes to anti-money laundering and unusual transaction reporting (UTR) did their job."
The mayor added, "I would also like to remind people that this was a crime. Commenting in a manner that shames a person or organization for being the victim of a sophisticated crime is uncalled for so I would ask that you be respectful and understanding."
Ajibade was charged with three counts, and was only found guilty of fraud. Two other charges of impersonation were dismissed due to a lack of direct evidence.